Mailing Address


Street Address:

Eagle Ranch Post Office Box 7200 Chestnut Mountain, Georgia 30502

Eagle Ranch 5500 Union Church Road Flowery Branch, Georgia 30542

Phone: 770.967.8500 Fax: 770.967.3757 E-mail:

All photos for this publication were taken on site at Eagle Ranch by staff member Shannon Jackson.

CrisisHome at
High divorce rates, low graduation numbers, and teenage pregnancies are only symptoms. The contagious threats to healthy American families come from all directions, often innocently cloaked in today’s version of sheep’s clothing. Twenty-first century technology, while advancing communication to the highest level, ironically has stifled human contact at the personal level. For some, the age of e-mailing and “texting” only means Dad or Mom never leaves work, even when they’re home. And the rest of the family hardly notices, so engrossed in their televisions, computers, electronic games and cell phones.


‘Even youths gro w tired and weary and young men stu mble and fall. B those who tru st in the Lord ut for hel p will find their strength rene wed. T will soar with win gs as eagles.’ hey I saiah 40:30-31

Excerpt from an editorial in The Times
(Gainesville, Ga. newspaper)

May 12, 1983

. . . He says he is led by God in this venture. In this belated spring season, Eddie Staub’s dream is like a breath of fresh air. Too few pursue impossible dreams of selfless service with intense commitment to succeed. We have the feeling this is no ordinary project. It certainly is guided by no ordinary leader.

Never before in history have children and families – in North Georgia and across America – faced so many destructive pitfalls lurking in the shadows around a stable and loving home.
Even more destructive are the universal temptations of drug and alcohol abuse. The latest rage in methamphetamines and other drugs made from household items has accelerated the spread of addiction from the inner city to small towns. No matter where they live, no family is immune from the encroaching modern world. And with the onset of a critical health problem, death, or the loss of a job, hairline fractures in home life may eventually crack wide open. For many, the pressure is too much to bear.

Eagle Ranch provides a Christ-centered home Eagle R boys and girlsainC and in need ofhome anch provides crisis hrist-centered hope for for boys and girl s in crisis Partneringin need of ho pe and healing. — and with their families, and pursue g. P restoration andtheir families, n artnerin g with reunification. we heali family We seek to influence and reunification. we pursue famil y restoration and equip others who share a fluence and e impact children, W seek to insimilar calling to quip others who e families and future generations.

O M ur ission

theMiracle on Chestnut
For children and families in crisis, there is hope in a place called Eagle Ranch. Tucked away in a corner of Chestnut Mountain, Georgia, are 270 acres of beautiful woods and pasture where a miracle was born over two decades ago. A miracle that is now changing hearts and bringing families together again.


A miracle that is spreading across the United States and overseas. A miracle that surely comes from no other place than above.

share a similar callin g to impact children, families and future generations.

those who tru st in the L ord

will find their strength rene wed. T will soar with win gs as eagle hey

For children and families in crisis, is hope in a place called

Eagle Ranch


Seeds are Sown


Eagle R anch
It is here where good seeds are sown in a patchwork of countless lives, and the harvest is patiently and prayerfully awaited.


Eagle Ranch is a safe haven, a home, a school, and a counseling center where children come to live for a season of their lives while their families learn to put their lives back together again. It is here where good seeds are sown in a patchwork of countless lives, and the harvest is patiently and prayerfully awaited. Based in a small, quiet community northeast of Atlanta, the Ranch provides a Christianbased home for up to 54 boys and girls between the ages of 8 and 18. No more than seven children live under one roof, and each home is overseen by a loving houseparent couple trained to teach life skills and model a healthy family atmosphere.

Better Lives

The Ranch serves families throughout the upper half of the state, from the mountains of Northeast Georgia to more urban metro Atlanta. All of them are in some stage of crisis, seeking help for a difficult home life that may be causing a child to exhibit poor behavior or to struggle in school. The children who come to live at Eagle Ranch typically are referred by a wide range of public and private sources – a school counselor or teacher; a juvenile court judge; a church staff member; a mental health professional; a state official with Georgia’s Department of Family and Children Services (DFACS); or often a parent or concerned family friend.

Integration of Best Practices
Children receive help in virtually every aspect of their young lives – spiritually, emotionally, intellectually, socially and physically. This care is systematically integrated daily among Eagle Ranch’s houseparents, counselors and teachers with the ultimate goal of healing the child and reunifying his or her family. Eagle Ranch is a melding of best practices from some of the finest children’s programs in the country. However, over the last quartercentury the Ranch has evolved into its own distinct program, one that is now recognized even overseas as a model for addressing the problems of children and families in crisis.

Defying an Easy Description
The Ranch may best be described by what it is not. • It does not warehouse an assembly line of children. The small number of children in each home allows individual attention and focus. • It is not a custodial program. Fully licensed counselors regularly engage children and families in therapy sessions. • It is not a program of independent or disconnected services. A holistic, well-rounded approach is taken to ensure integration of all elements of care – home life, counseling and education. • It is not focused solely on the child. Family reunification is the ultimate goal.

Reunification is the Primary Focus
Today, one of the greatest distinguishing factors of Eagle Ranch is its primary focus not only on the child – but on the whole family.

where ho pe soars
Indeed, with its impact in so many areas of the child’s life, Eagle Ranch hardly fits into a single definition. Except to say that it is a place “where hope soars.”

Founded on Faith
Originally envisioned as a boys’ home, Eagle Ranch was founded back in 1985 to quite a bit of fanfare. Founder Eddie Staub captured the hearts and imagination of an entire North Georgia region – and the media – after moving there from Alabama with little money, experience, or local ties to the area – only a vision and the strong belief that he had been called to a life of helping children.

Wide Acclaim for Eagle Ranch
“I have found Eagle Ranch to be one of the most unique and progressive havens for children, not only in this state but also throughout the country. They are clearly on the cutting edge of best practice for children.”
Normer Adams Executive Director Georgia Association of Homes & Services for Children

Chance Meeting with a Legend
Along the way to raising start-up funds for the Ranch, Eddie Staub was able to secure a meeting in the fall of 1982 with the head football coach of the University of Georgia, the legendary Vince Dooley. The encounter on a practice field ended with a handshake and Eddie’s “first friend in Georgia. ” Dooley went on to become a key vocal supporter of Eagle Ranch and still serves as an emeritus member of its Board of Advisors.

“Many organizations spend much effort making children behave, but Eagle Ranch concentrates on the heart change that can carry a child beyond the rules and structure of Eagle Ranch and into their homes and communities.”
Earl N. Stuck National Childcare Consultant Former executive, Child Welfare League of America

From an Eagle Ranch Graduate
“I don’t know how many lives have been changed for the better all these years because of Eagle Ranch. But I can assure you I know of one: mine. Eagle Ranch gave me an opportunity to make a fresh start, and now I am helping to give other children the same hope.”
Shane Sullards Founder and Owner of Lapdog, a youth leadership program

Eagle Ranch was
founded back in


Early into his uphill effort, Eddie found inspiration from a message hanging on the office wall of an Atlanta minister. “Attempt something so great for God, that it’s doomed to failure unless God be in it.” He wrote it down on a scrap of paper and carried it with him through his trials in starting the Ranch. Today, it hangs in the Ranch’s administration building.

Eagle Ranch “is the gold standard. It’s a model . . . that actually works.”
Michael Thurmond
Georgia Labor Commissioner Former head of Georgia Division of Family & Children Services

Excerpt from

On Eagle’s Wings – The True Story of the Founding of Eagle Ranch
“Let me make sure I heard you right,” Coach Vince Dooley said, his arms still folded as he cocked his head slightly and studied Eddie Staub’s face. “You want to start a boys’ ranch, but you don’t have any land yet?” “No sir.” “And you don’t have any money either.” “No sir.” “And you don’t have any friends?” “No sir… unless you’re interested.” Dooley chuckled. “It sounds like you have your work cut out for you…What exactly do you want from me?” “Be on my board of advisors. Make a few phone calls and open doors for me.” Dooley paused, as if to reflect. The seriousness had returned to his face. Finally, he extended his right hand. “It’s Eddie, right?” “Yes, sir.” They shook hands. “Eddie, anything you need, you just let me know.” Eddie smiled back sheepishly. He’d just made his first friend in Georgia.

Children are our Messages to the Future
Since its inception, Eagle Ranch has been involved with more than 500 children for a season of their lives. And while not every child has been a success story, the positive generational impact on children’s families will continue to be felt well beyond the Ranch and our own lifetimes. Like arrows shot from a bow, children are the messages we send to a faraway place and time we may never see.


H life at the R ome anch teaches structure, responsibility, and ho w to get along with others.

our goal is for the children to return home after their time at and for the family to be prepared to function in a

Eagle Ranch

healthy manner

Eagle Ranch Program
Entry into the Eagle Ranch program begins with a thorough evaluation of the child and parents (or legal guardian such as a grandparent). The entire family must embrace the program to ensure a lasting change. The screening and interview process is conducted at the Ranch by a full team of houseparents, counselors, and educational staff. An assessment of at least three paternal and maternal generations is performed in order to identify patterns of dysfunction or what is termed “generational curses.” Each member of the treatment management team must agree that the child and family would be a good fit for the Eagle Ranch program. If accepted, an individual treatment plan is then developed. During the admissions process, the child’s family identifies poor “old self” characteristics in preparation to learn positive “new self” changes and to set goals toward achieving them.

Home Life
While children may live at Eagle Ranch from elementary through high school, the program is structured to motivate them toward returning home as soon as possible. Consequently, the average stay is about two years. The girls and boys spend the majority of their time at the Ranch, busily learning new life skills. Home life at the Ranch teaches structure, responsibility for chores, and how to get along with others. Every other weekend, and on holidays, the children then return to their natural homes to practice and put these lessons into action. The discipline philosophy at Eagle Ranch is key in helping to reverse patterns of inappropriate behavior. Houseparents and staff follow a “choice-and-consequence” model of discipline which establishes specific consequences – such as losing certain privileges – for poor decisions. Each child’s progress is measured through a ladder system of reward and privileges that starts at the “Crow” level and aspires to an “Eagle.”

Three Key Pillars of the Eagle Ranch Program
• Home life • Counseling • Education These integral components are coordinated and woven into the care of every child, with the ultimate goal of family restoration and reunification.

Giving Back Their Childhood (excerpt from Seasons)
The children at Eagle Ranch often tell me they feel younger here. To see our boys and girls play softball, capture the flag, kick the can, and other simple games of our own younger years, and actually enjoy them, is a wonderful fulfillment of our desire to give them back their childhood. One day, they will see the value of passing on these same experiences to their own children and giving them a taste of the simple pleasures they enjoyed during their season at Eagle Ranch.
Eddie Staub Founder and Executive Director of Eagle Ranch

“You accepted Billy and changed his life forever . . . Tanks k al who have sew my precious son down the right road. ”
Excerpt from a letter to Eagle Ranch


15% General and

Eagle Ranch Program { c o n t in u e d }
The Ranch’s licensed professional counselors provide individual, family and group counseling. In addition, they lead the children through a variety of creative exercises that include equestrian therapy (particularly for the girls) and play therapy (for younger children). The counselors are involved in every facet of the Eagle Ranch program, working with the houseparents and school staff to wrap each child in continual assessment and counseling. They also fully involve the child’s family as an integral part of the overall program. As an on-campus school, there also is greater coordination, accountability, and full integration of the Eagle Ranch treatment program. For example, houseparents and counselors advise teachers of any specific problems with a child at home (and vice versa) so that issues can be dealt with on a timelier basis. To date, the Eagle Ranch school has demonstrated remarkable success with an average gain of two grade levels for students attempting to catch up to their academic age level. But academic achievement is not the only measure. In an analysis of the school, a national education consultant made the following observation: “Although academic achievement is usually the standard of relevance in educational programs, the Eagle Ranch program seems to provide an even greater benefit in the development of self-confidence, study and social skills, and the instilling of the value of education in the students. ” Eagle Ranch also maintains a close partnership with the neighboring Hall County School System, working with an excellent elementary and high school team of teachers and school counselors to support students from Eagle Ranch with their academic performance and behavioral skills.

Nine Most Frequently Asked Questions About Eagle Ranch
1) What are the ages of the children at Eagle Ranch? Ages 8 to 18 for boys and girls. 2) What are some of the criteria for acceptance into the program? • Entry age of 8 to 14 for girls; 8 to 16 for boys. • Mild to moderate emotional and/or behavioral problems. • Minimum I.Q. score of 70. • Reside within 80 miles of Eagle Ranch. • Parents or extended family must agree to be involved in counseling. • Child must be alcohol and substanceabuse free at time of entry. 3) Where do the children come from? The majority come from the Ranch’s base in Northeast Georgia. However, children have been referred to the Ranch from more than 20 counties in the region within an 80-mile radius. Referrals typically come from schools, churches, concerned friends or family members, the juvenile court system, and the state Department of Family and Children Services (DFACS). 4) How long do the children stay? The average stay is between 18 months and two years. 5) Where do you get your money? Almost entirely from private sources, which include individuals, corporations, foundations and churches.
Girls’ Homes


6) Do you receive any public funding? Very little. The state of Georgia does provide a monthly stipend for children referred by its DFACS office, but that represents a very small percentage of the children at Eagle Ranch. Also Title I funds are available for the Eagle Ranch School. 7) Do you charge the children’s families for your services? Yes, but there are no set fees. To encourage full participation, the Ranch charges families on a sliding scale based upon income. 8) What is the operating budget? $2.7 million or approximately $50,000 per child. The cost per child is higher than most children’s homes because of the additional program components of counseling and education. 9) How is Eagle Ranch different from other children’s homes? Eagle Ranch is not solely a custodial or residential program. It provides an integrated program of counseling and education. Also, houseparents have no more than seven children per home, allowing much more focused attention for each child.
Future Girls’ Homes School

76% Children’s

Our financial stewardship of charitable gifts
To maintain our program’s Christian principles and independence from government influence, Eagle Ranch relies almost solely on private donations to support a $2.7 million annual budget. More than 76% of contributions goes directly to children’s programs, a percentage that far exceeds the 65% standard set under national ethics guidelines for U.S. charities. Every dollar of every gift to Eagle Ranch – a 501(c)(3) organization and member of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA) – is carefully monitored. Our financial records are audited annually by an independent accounting firm with additional ongoing review by the finance committee of the Eagle Ranch Board of Directors.

Most children who enter Eagle Ranch are at least two academic grade levels behind. This unfortunate truth led the Ranch to establish an on-campus school. Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), the Eagle Ranch school covers grades six to nine, helping young students receive extra attention during the middle school years, a difficult transition period for most children anywhere. The school provides an extremely low instructional ratio of one teacher and one para-professional for every 12 children – a tremendous advantage.

Boys’ Homes

Debt-free Philosophy
Eagle Ranch spends no money on new capital projects (such as construction of a children’s home) until all funding is secured. That means not one penny of contributions ever goes toward interest payments on debt.

Seeking a ‘Heart Change’ for Life
All three elements of home life, counseling and education work in concert to promote a “change in heart” for a lifetime as opposed to a behavioral change that temporarily conforms to a program’s requirements. Psalm 127 reads that “unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain. In this ” same spirit, the Eagle Ranch staff strives to make every action in its program relational and filled with the love of God.
Located on 270 acres of wooded land four miles off Interstate 85, in southern Hall County, Georgia, about 50 miles north of Atlanta.

Eagle Ranch
Chestnut Mountain, Georgia

unless the L builds the house, ord

its builders labor in vain“
P m 127 sal


The Wings Mission

The Wings Initiative is a global initiative of Eagle Ranch to equip others in starting Christ-centered, holistic homes for hurting children. Its focus is to provide information and assistance in the birthing or retooling of children’s homes worldwide, thereby significantly expanding its reach in the healing and restoration of children and their families.

W gs in Wings

The Wings Initiative derived its name from the concept of giving ‘lift and wings’ to the visions of others seeking to rescue children in need.

I nitiative
Taking flight across the world
“Eagle Ranch’s Wings Initiative was God’s answer to prayer for My Father’s House (a children’s home in El Salvador)... They have come along beside us as a big brother to guide us through the steps necessary to develop the ministry.”
Gary Powell
Executive Director My Father’s House in San Salvador El Salvador


Exporting Eagle Ranch to Children Everywhere
In recent years, word of Eagle Ranch’s reputation and success in helping children has spread far outside its North Georgia base to distant locales across the country and even overseas. Consequently, the Ranch has received an ever-increasing number of inquiries from others seeking guidance in starting or reshaping their own programs for needy children. Recognizing an opportunity to expand its services and help even more children, the Eagle Ranch Board of Directors established The Wings Initiative in 1997. Since then, hundreds of inspired people have attended instructional Wings seminars conducted

twice a year at the Ranch, where they learn firsthand about the Eagle Ranch model – and how it can be replicated or adapted. Beyond the seminars, the Wings program and its full-time director also provide oneon-one mentoring and consulting services to select groups in the start-up or fine-tuning of children’s homes. Though still in its infancy, the Wings Initiative already has helped establish children’s homes throughout the United States – and even abroad in Latin America and other areas of the world. The potential is truly global in reach.

“With big hopes and bigger ideas, I was blessed to find exactly what I needed in order to help spread my wings and learn to fly into unchartered territory. Wings gave me not only a reality check but hope and a belief...”
Joan Smith
Executive Director Noah’s Ark Jeffersonville, Indiana

Exporting Eagle R anch

to children every where

“Even youths grow tired and weary and young men stumble and fall. But those who trust in the Lord for help will find their strength renewed. They will soar with wings as eagles. ”
Isaiah 40: 30-31

those who tru st in the L ord

tru will soar with winLord st in the gs as eagles. will find their strength rene wed. T hey

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